Lampard: Sevilla game an opportunity for Chelsea players

Chelsea boss Frank Lampard says the penultimate group game of their Champions League campaign provides a great chance for fringe players to show they deserve to be in the side.

A last-gasp 2-1 victory against Rennes last week ensured the Blues have progressed from Group E with two games remaining.

But Lampard said Wednesday’s away game with Seville is still important, for a number of reasons.

“For players who haven’t played that many minutes, their motivation is to show that they deserve to be in the starting 11,” Lampard said.

“I have difficult choices and it is an opportunity for players to give me more difficult choices.”

Lampard added that’s it’s not always clear that winning the group gives the best pathway through, but said “you generally want to do that”.

“We are certainly not taking the game lightly,” he said. “Even though we have qualified, we want to win the group. I don’t expect a drop in level but there will be an opportunity for some players to get minutes. It certainly isn’t a dead rubber.”

Jorginho , Callum Hudson-Odoi, Christian Pulisic, Fikayo Tomiri, Emerson, Cesar Azpilicueta, Billy Gilmour and Olivier Giroud are all likely to feature.

Lampard explained: “Players that aren’t playing regularly are training really, really well and are part of the group and important to us. Some people are knocking on the door and deserve opportunities.

“Some players have been playing a lot. I talk about the hectic schedule, and it is hectic, so I can’t say that on one hand and then not look at making some rotations for this game.”